Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word


 - definition

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary entries. Click on the T button in an entry to review the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

noun preparation pronunciation in American English /ˌprepəˈreɪʃ(ə)n/ 
Word Forms
  1. 1
    [uncountable] the process of making someone or something ready for something

    Despite a lot of preparation, we didn't win the contest.

    preparation of:

    All notes used in the preparation of the main report should be retained for future reference.

    preparation for:

    The experience was good preparation for a career in journalism.

    in preparation for something:

    The flowers were ordered in preparation for the wedding.

  2. 2


    [plural] things that you do so that you are ready for something

    NATO continued its military preparations.

    preparation for:

    The managers were busy with preparations for the conference.

    make preparations (for something):

    Organizers are making the final preparations for next week's Christmas parade.

    preparations (for something) are under way:

    Preparations are well under way for a week of special events in May.


a paid holiday given to a new employee before they start their job

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

selfie stick

an expandable stick which you attach to a mobile phone or camera to help you take a selfie …

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog